Amid the pressure of constant trade rumors as the July 31 trade deadline approaches, Cole Hamels pitched a no hitter with 13 strikeouts and two walks as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Chicago Cubs 5-0. Hamels threw the 13th no hitter in the history of the team. For the Cubs, it was the first time they had been no hit since 1965.
The no hitter was the first of Hamels’ ten-year career although he was part of a combined no hitter against the Atlanta Braves in September 2014.
Yesterday’s result will once again have interested teams deciding to make offers once again. Until yesterday, Hamels had not recorded a victory in June and July and his ERA had ballooned to a 3.68. He had a record of 0-4 record over his last nine starts with a 5.06 ERA.
Many scouts who watched Hamels pitch over his previous two starts saw a pitcher who in their words seemed “disinterested” on the mound giving up 20 hits in only 6 1/3 innings.
But, yesterday’s no hitter will remind interested teams of how Hamels can be a big game pitcher under pressure and help their team win a World Series. Back in 2008, Hamels was dominant in the Phillies’ World Series victory over the Tampa Bay Rays going 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA.
Big market teams like the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees have to be drooling over the possibility of adding Hamels to their starting rotation. Hamels still had speed on his pitches throwing 96 mph on his 123rd pitch. For the year, Hamels has a 3.64 ERA pitching with 137 strikeouts and 39 walks in 128 2/3 innings.
The Phillies should take whatever offer gets them the best prospects who are closest to playing in the majors. You will see teams willing to overpay for Hamels because they believe he can help them make the playoffs and anchor their rotation.
And that’s as I see it!
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Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Scott D Mikulski